Thiruvananthapuram: Forget Left unity, the two Communist parties in Kerala have been at each other's throats for a while now. It has reached a crescendo with the smaller of the two, the Communist Party of India (CPI) warning 'big brother' Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) to immediately stop abusing it.
'Don't provoke us, we give you an ultimatum that please stop uttering abuses against us. We will not take it anymore. Please stop saying that our state secretary Chandrappan is a 'Dangeist'. Don't forget that you were part Dange too,' said C. Divakaran, senior CPI legislator and minister in the V.S. Achuthanandan cabinet (2006-11).
S.A. Dange was one of the founder leaders of the Communist Party in India. In 1964 the Communist party split with the CPI-M taking shape. One of the main reasons why the split took place was Dange always had a soft corner for the Congress, while the CPI-M was dead against that.
Divakaran hit out against the CPI-M after its newly re-elected state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan attacked Chandrappan and asked him to ensure that he 'stops speaking nonsense that our party conference was done by an event management company'.
'How dare someone say this. We will not accept this irrespective of whoever has said it. We are a party which is very strong at all levels, and there is no point in feeling jealous of us,' was Vijayan's direct diatribe against CPI state secretary C.K. Chandrappan.
The ties between the two 'red parties' went from bad to worse ever since the CPI-M decided to hold its state party conference here at almost the same time as the CPI was to hold its state meeting at Kollam.
While the CPI-M's meeting got over here Friday night, CPI's conference came to a close Saturday night.
Chandrappan, considered one of the most soft spoken Communists, even said that leaders should use decent and respectable language while speaking.
'I apologise to the CPI-M if my statement that their state conference was done by an event management firm hurt them. Everyone knows who is indulging in loose talk. It is best if all speak in a civilised manner because the public is watching everything,' said Chandrappan.
On Sunday, veteran CPI-M legislator E.P. Jayarajan hit out at Chandrappan again.
'Chandrappan speaks nonsense and he does not possess any of the qualities of the previous state secretary Veliyam Bharghavan. Chandrappan's utterance will only help the Congress party and it will be a blow to his own party,' remarked an angry Jayarajan.
With daggers drawn, the coming days will see which way the war of words between the two 'red parties' takes. In the '70s, the CPI and the Congress was in unison and ruled Kerala and it is often referred to as the best ever government the state has seen.
A Mathrubhumi Report